All you need to know for a memorable Mountain Gorilla Safari
Mountain gorilla trekking is a wonderful experience that will give you a chance to get close to the largest primate also known as the gentle giants in its natural habitat.
The 2018 gorilla census shows that there are over 1000 mountain gorilla still in existence in the whole world today.
Mountain gorilla population has increased, there is a steady growth in the wild mountain gorillas for the past few years which is the greatest news for the conservationists in Africa and in the world.
Gorillas are also the closest living relatives to man, but then again humans are the greatest threat to the survival of these gorillas.
Understanding Mountain Gorillas
Gorillas are the largest of the great apes and share a percentage of their biological makeup with humans.
Gorillas used to inhabit a swathe of land that cut right across central Africa, but the last remaining eastern mountain gorillas’ number just over 1,000 gorillas reside in the Virunga Massif (Rwanda’s Virunga, Congo’s Volcanoes and Uganda’s Mgahinga Gorilla National Park)
This is in accordance with the World Wildlife Fund and over 459 gorilla populations are found in the dense forests of Uganda’s Bwindi Impenetrable National Park as of December 2018 according to the Bwindi Gorilla Census results released in December 2018.
When to go Mountain Gorilla Trekking?
There are no specific seasons or months you can trek mountain gorillas, this means you can go on a gorilla trekking safari in Uganda and Rwanda at any time of your choosing.
The gorilla tracking experience will be incredible no matter when you go, but there are advantages to going at different times of the year.
It’s generally easier to track gorillas in the rainy season.
The busiest months in the mountains are from December to February and July to September.
Gorilla trekking experience in Uganda 2020
Uganda gorilla trekking is well known as a once in a lifetime experience giving you the opportunity to get a close encounter with mountain gorillas in their natural habitat.
For your entire gorilla safari, Uganda remains the most affordable gorilla trekking destination compared to Rwanda where gorilla permit costs $1500 per person.
Where to Track Gorillas
- Bwindi Impenetrable National Park (Uganda)
- Mgahinga Gorilla National Park (Uganda)
- Volcanoes National Park (Rwanda)
- Virunga National Park (DR Congo)
Gorilla trekking permit costs-prices 2020
It is very true that Uganda does not invest so much in marketing its gorilla tourism but there has been a boom in the demand for Uganda gorilla permits, this is simply because of the highly competitive price.
Gorilla trekking permit in Uganda costs only $700 per trek, for those who are interested to know the price of a gorilla permit in Rwanda,
Rwanda gorilla trekking permit go for $1500 per person and you are allowed to spend one hour with mountain gorillas
DR-Congo has the cheapest gorilla permits, one permit can go for as low as $400 per person.
Fitness as a mountain gorilla trek requirement
With the combination of mud, steep hills and altitude, gorilla tracking is hard work.
Although gorillas sometimes wander near the visitor’s centers and might be found quickly, you’re far more likely to be hiking for two to four hours, and some trackers have wandered across the mountains for an entire day.
What to carry
For the most part, you don’t need anything special beyond the usual outdoor essentials such as sunscreen, insect repellent, and food and water (enough for the whole day, just in case).
Mountain boots are an important tool to carry.
Some people like rubber boots because they keep the mud and fire ants at bay, but they have no ankle support.
Plan for rain no matter what month you’re tracking because gorillas live in rainforests.
It’s recommended you also carry a sweeter.
You may have to trudge through thorns and stinging nettle, so trousers and long-sleeved shirts with some degree of heft may save you some irritation.
For the same reason, garden gloves can come in handy.
Mountain Gorilla Trekking Rules and Regulations
- Anyone with an illness cannot track gorillas. In Rwanda, you’ll get a full refund if you cancel because of illness and produce a doctor’s note, while in Uganda, you’ll get back half.
- Eating and smoking near the mountain gorillas are prohibited.
- If you have to cough or sneeze, cover your mouth and turn your head.
- Flash photography is banned; turn off the auto-flash.
- Speak quietly and don’t point at the gorillas or make sudden movements; they may see these as a threat.
- Don’t litter in the park
- Keep a few meters back from the gorillas and promptly follow your guide’s directions about where to walk.
- When faced with a charging silverback, never, ever run away, crouch down until he cools off.
- Children under 15 years of age aren’t allowed to visit the gorillas in the jungle.
A mountain gorilla safaris are one of the most memorable safaris one could every take. The journey also known as the “trek” to see the mountain gorillas can be a hectic one but very rewarding
Trust the experts to organize a mountain gorilla safari for you. Get in touch with us in case of any inquiries.